Photo credit: Nathalie Mba Bikodo, Demounting Doegen | 2016. Courtesy of the CERA PROJECT.
The performance will consists of 234 black balloons as transmittors or channels to voice recordings between 1910-1941, prepared by the German colonial project commissioned by the Sound Prussian Commission and directed by Wilhelm Doegen, a German linguistic responsible for creating the project of the first Museum Of World Cultures in Germany. In the span of 2 wars, German reconciled with its identity and political world position by considering the cultural and technological advances through African heritage and migration. They called it the ultra-modernism that would re-map Germany's political and most importantly colonial power. Doegen was responsible for the gramophone recordings of over 8,000 African prisoners of war in detained in colonial camps in Germany. The soldiers' pleas for help were heard across the country in exhibition galleries to fund the resettlements of colonies abroad. However a large archive of these voices are missing; those of the women.
ABOUT THE ARTIST
Nathalie Anguezomo Mba Bikoro's interdisciplinary practices incorporate a synthesis of collaborative engagements, the development of international community dialogue and body politics through a merging of conceptual responses in live art performance, film, literature & archives. Her practices derive from developing a creative language through cancer physio-therapies in her personal battle with Leukaemia cancer throughout the 90's. Her critical process is informed by discourses of histories, archives and theories on postcolonialism, diaspora, migration, identities, afro & alter modernism and culture. Her work reveals and creates moments of synthesis and harmony between seemingly disparate, bodies of knowledge, cultural traditions and value systems. An exploration of creolised identity, heritage, memory and homeland, the artist investigates systems of colonial past & present, tyranny, dictates of gender, traditions and mythologies. She engages with communities contesting handcrafted economies of art, politics, literature, ecologies and philosophy combining alternative strategies in performance and practice to deconstruct social narratives and work on processes and engagement rather than final products. With her approach both educative and allegorical, Anguezomo Mba Bikoro highlights the different tones of a society shared between delusions and ritual.
"We always supposed something would give us a definition of who we really were, our class position or our national position, our geographic origins or where our grandparents came from, but I don't think any one thing any longer will tell us who we are"
- Stuart Hall